Post Date March 22, 2012 – Delays in the Claims Settlement process can’t be always blamed on the Auto Insurance Company. Accident Victims and their attorneys are also responsible for muddying the waters. Delay in auto insurance settlement probably is truly distorted in the public mind. When serious injuries, or even their possibility exists in the future, a competent lawyer will delay settlement until the full extent of the bodily injury or damage is known. This can delay settlement of an auto insurance claim from three to five years. I very serious cases, cases can drag on from 10 to 15 years.
This by-product of the tort system may result in the best possible financial award to at fault accident victim, but it certainly doesn’t relieve the squeeze caused by loss of wages and mounting medical bills during the period of a long litigation. The problem can be relieved by a degree by the willingness of larger car insurance companies to advance medical payments and lost earnings. Car insurance Carriers will do this when a determination has been made an accident was the fault of their insured. In these cases, they will wait on the courts determination on payment regarding Pain & Suffering.
Another issue which causes delay in accident claims settlement is out court system. Both Car Insurance Companies and Lawyers both agree congestion in our court system. There are a number cities which have severe traffic issues; Boston, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia and oddly enough – St. Louis. A number of Judges in the Los Angeles County Court System have streamlined court procedures and have erased a back-log of court cases. Both executives at the Automobile Insurance Coverage Companies and Lawyers both agree the courtrooms are the most obsolete feature of the Tort legal System. Many Judges are limited to hearing cases 3 to 5 hours a day. The balance of their time is spent studying rulings and preparing for court by meeting with both Defense and Plaintiff’s counsel.
Michael E. Dortch
President & Managing Agent
Corporate Home Office
618 South Broad Street
Lansdale, Pennsylvania 19446
(800) 807-0762 ext. 602